6Knowledge Entrepreneurs

A Working Contract of Rightsand Responsibilities

Not long ago, work life was a pretty straightforward affair. You found a job, did what you were told, and were paid a salary.

But recently this system began coming apart. Layoffs have shattered the bonds of employee-employer loyalty. Wages have been falling for two decades. Union membership has dropped to a fraction of its former levels. And one-third of the labor force has become lost in a “contingent” status of part-time or temporary work.

At the same time, other changes have begun introducing more enlightened work practices. Employees are encouraged to participate in major decisions. Many now own their companies. They enjoy broader rights to control their work. The labor ...

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